My best cycling climbs

In my mind there is nothing more rewarding than climbing a steep hill on my bike, than challenging myself to climb something that a car would struggle to get up or completing a ride that people have said cannot be done.

This will be a constantly updated list so here are my current favourites…

1. Madonna del Ghisallo, 754m


Average grade: 5.2 %

Length: 10.6 km

Altitude start: 202 m

Altitude top: 754 m

Ascent: 552 m

2. Col de La Croix, 1778m


Starting elevation: 435 m

Final elevation: 1,778 m

Length of ascent: 22.6 km

Elevation gain: 1,345 m

Average gradient: 6 %

3. Col de Joux Plane, 1691m

4. Klausenpass, 1948m


Average grade: 6.1 %

Length: 24.6 km

Altitude start: 451 m

Altitude top: 1948 m

Ascent: 1497 m

Maximum: 10 %

5. Col de la Forclaz, 1527m


Average grade: 6.6 %

Length: 16 km

Altitude start: 476 m

Altitude top: 1526 m

Ascent: 1050 m

6. Col de la Gueulaz, 1966m


Difficulty medium

Length 11 km

Duration 1:30 h

Ascent 918 m

Descent 18 m

7. Col des Mosses, 1445m


Average grade: 5.5 %

Length: 18.8 km

Altitude start: 417 m

Altitude top: 1445 m

Ascent: 1028 m

Maximum: 10 %

8. Glaubenbielenpass, 1611m


Altitude top 1543m
Ascent 30,0km

Maximum 11%

9. Col de la Colombiere, 1618m


Average grade: 5.9 %

Length: 11.7 km

Altitude start: 923 m

Altitude top: 1613 m

Ascent: 690 m

Maximum: 12 %

10. Col du Mittelburg,


The average gradient for this climb is very misleading with respect to what awaits you towards the end. The first 2.5km boasts an easy average at about 1.1%, this is because of the short downhill section. The following 3.8km increases to 5.8%. However the last 3km are a leg busting 10.6% with sections exceeding 12%.
There are plenty of cols in Switzerland, France and Italy that are in my sights next year so I’m sure that this time next year this list will be completely different….

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